how I can sign up for automatic notifications about fires near me?
In Marin, the “Alert Marin” notification system is used by all fire and law enforcement agencies to make emergency and evacuation notifications. You must register your phone(s) and address at www.alertmarin.org.
It’s important to understand that you will NOT receive routine notifications whenever the fire department responds to a fire in your neighborhood. This system will normally only be used when there is threat or need for evacuation. In most cases, firefighters are able to quickly extinguish fires without the need for evacuations.
Nixle and Twitter, as well as local tv and radio, are other good sources for information also, but are not the official evacuation notification system.
Learn more at www.firesafemarin.org/
My neighbor has a eucalyptus tree and it is an extreme fire hazard. How can I make them remove it?
If it helps ease your nerves, you should know that the mere presence of eucalyptus trees does not necessarily indicate an extreme fire hazard. Single spoecimens of most tree variaties, including many fire hazardous species, can usually be maintained in a way that minimizes the hazard.
AThe blue gum eucalyptus common in Marin is considered a “fire hazardous” species, yet they can be (and often are) maintained in a state that makes them relatively fire resistant. By removing vegetation around the base of the trees, removing the bark which peels back annually, and removing small diameter lower limbs up to at least 1/3 of the tree’s height can make a eucalyptus tree much more resistant to igniting during a wildfire. Often times our biggest concern about these trees is the leaves that fall from them onto nearby rooftops - not the tree itself. Contact your local fire department or a licensed arborist for an evaluation of the tree(s) in question.
Our property line is 10’ from our home and there are several properties adjoining, all with overgrown vegetation. Do our neighbors have responsibility to maintain defensible space on their land adjoining us?
Some Marin fire agencies have adopted fire code language that may require neighboring properties to provide some vegetation clearance to protect their neighbor's home. State law does not necessarily require this. FIRESafe MARIN encourages neighbors to work together and to grant permission to their neighbors to work on adjoining properties to gain defensible space. Contact your local fire department for an interpretation of the fire code that applies to your neighborhood.
I’m tracking hours and expenses for our Firewise committee. Can paying someone else for work for Firewise projects on your property be included in your investment calculations?
Yes, if you pay someone else it can be listed as a cash expense. Examples - hiring a tree company or landscaping work and maintenance (as long the work is done to remove hazardous plants or install fire-resistant plants, create a fuel break, or improve a home's fire-resistance. You can also include the portion of a town or FIRESafe MARIN''s expenses toward community chipper days that was applied in your neighborhood.